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Thursday, October 20, 2011

Roasted Pork Loin

So, I decided to make some homemade Apple Sauce.  See my related post, Homemade Organic Apple Sauce With Peel, for that.

I had some Gala apples I had to use up, but mostly I thought I had a couple of things in the fridge which would go well with apple sauce.  I had some leftover German potato cakes in the fridge, and a couple of cheap pork loins in the freezer.  Pork loins which were sold in a two pack for less than $5.00.

So, this post is about the unsung hero, the meal behind the apple sauce.

I thawed one of those pork loins in the fridge overnight, the night before, so it was ready to roast.

I created a real simple rub (which ended up being kind of Provençale*) by grinding together in my mortar and pestle, in order of concentration, the following:
  • oregano
  • savory
  • basil
  • fennel seeds
  • sel gris
  • black peppercorns
*In actuality, a typical 'Herbes de Provence" mix usually does not contain oregano; instead it often has rosemary, thyme, and lavender.

I was a little sick of rosemary, from a very-rosemary-thanksgiving feast, and I've currently run out of lavender, which actually would have worked with this.  However, I was feeling kind of lazy, and I wanted to cook the potato-cakes in with the pork loin, so I picked the common denominators among what would work with BOTH.  Oregano goes with potatoes and pork quite well... plus I like it.  A lot.  It may be overused... but there could be a reason for that.  Fennel and pork go together like... fennel and oregano.  The others are just good complements to such a mix.  

I think I've explained before, my propensity to always segregate flavours in a meal according to a single dominant flavour, and then a couple (or multiple) complementary flavours. If you haven't read that post, please see Dominant vs.Complementary Flavours, for a delightful and irreverent trip across ijj's palate.  

Anyway, that mix got rubbed well into a perforated pork loin.  I like to stab little shallow holes in the meat; it tenderizes, allows for more surface area for flavour-absorption, and it's super fun.  Just affix a grimace, flip the knife handle around in your grip, and go to town.

I quartered my leftover potato cakes, and just placed them in my slightly-greased Le Creuset, loosely situated about the recently-violated pork loin.

I put this into the oven at only 350° as I wanted some time to work on the apple sauce.

For that, please see my dedicated post entitled Homemade Organic Apple Sauce WithPeel.

However, here is a quick pic of the final product.

Click to Enlarge
The wife was about 45 mins late, and despite turning the oven down to warm, the thoroughly-traumatized pork loin was making its peace with whatever gods it prayed to by the end.  The accompanying potatoes, along for this joyride, just did not know what hit them, and by this time were feeling soundly desecrated themselves.

I say this in jest, because the pork was actually still rather moist, and the potatoes - which had originally suffered from the unfortunate happenstance of having moist interiors - were still rather fluffy.  It was good.  And, considering that there was delicious apple sauce to smother over it all, I wasn't really upset.

Incidentally, if you're wondering about that thermos flask... (and I know you are!) check out this post on my Thermal Flasks for the Kitchen.